Manufacturing hub aims to assist companies big and small

Feb 28, 2014

Manufacturing remains a key part of the local economy, with 50,000 jobs, 2,000 companies, and $5 billion in gross regional product. That's why Governor Cuomo is putting $45 million into the Buffalo Niagara Institute for Advanced Manufacturing Competitiveness.

The Institute is meant to  work with the University at Buffalo to bring the latest in manufacturing technology and knowledge to the workplace to make Western New York companies competitive with the world and provide the jobs of the future in an increasingly high-tech manufacturing world.

The former SmartPill facility at Main and Virginia will be the temporary site of the new operation.
Credit Mike Desmond/WBFO News

While the institute involves a deep partnership with UB, it is intended to be a training and research operation with functioning machinery and technical assistance.

"This isn't about just General Motors, Moog [or] Greatbatch, the companies that already are employing hundreds and thousands of people, but for the hundreds of companies that employ five, ten, [or] twenty people," says InVentures Group CEO Keith Blakely.

The institute, which is part of the "Buffalo Billion," will be run by a non-profit engineering services research and development company EWI, which has experience with this kind of program.

Starting this summer, the institute will start operating out of the old SmartPill building at Main and Virginia, with offices first and then machinery as it is installed.